Florida State University is located in Tallahassee, Florida. There are branch campuses located in Panama City and Sarasota in Florida, and an international branch in the Republic of Panama. Florida State University was founded in 1851 as a small public institution., became a 4-year school in 1901, and received university status in 1947. The University has existed in many different forms prior to becoming a university, including a separate male and female colleges. The University now awards associate, bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral, and professional degrees. It is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
The University is also committed to international education, and offers study-abroad programs in several countries in Europe and Central America.
Florida State’s beginnings date as far back as 1823, when the Territorial Legislature began discussing plans for a system of higher education. Much of the University’s history took place in various legislative and government sessions, and it went through many names and missions before officially becoming Florida State University in 1947. After World War II, the Tallahassee campus saw much growth and maturity, with the addition of physical and academic assets to round out the University’s character. After such a long history, today Florida State University consists of seventeen different independent colleges.
There are seventeen academic divisions, including the Colleges of Arts and Sciences, Business, Communication, Education, Engineering, Human Sciences, Law, Medicine, Music, Information, and Social Science and Social Work. Schools of Criminology and Criminal Justice, Film, Nursing, Theatre, and Visual Arts and Dance are also part of the University.
An associate of arts degree is awarded. With seventeen different colleges, the numbers of baccalaureate and graduate degrees awarded is extensive. Florida State University offers bachelor’s degrees in fields as diverse as classical civilization, Latin American and Caribbean Studies, meteorology, finance, education, engineering, exercise science, music performance, social work, and graphic design. By far the largest number of majors is offered in the College of Arts and Sciences, which encompasses fields common in the humanities and liberal arts. There are a limited number of combined BA/MA programs as well.
Graduate programs are offered in all seventeen colleges and school, including professional program in law and medicine. Post-master’s specialist degrees (Ed.S.) are also offered in several fields. There are also dual degree programs offered in fields such as urban planning, law, social work, and public administration.
Florida State academics have a strong foundation in the sciences, with biology, chemistry, and meteorology ranking among their best programs. The arts are also well represented within programs of music, dance, and drama. The performance arts “leak” some of their talent to the University’s School of Motion Picture, TV, and Recording Arts. Eligible students have access to a highly rated honors program, providing close interaction with faculty and accelerated study.
Florida State University offers research opportunities for students at all levels, in multiple fields. There are several graduate and undergraduate degree programs available through on-line study, though the number is still small.
The Directed Individual Study course gives undergrads the opportunity to perform unique research projects.
One of the most dynamic traditions in all of college sports is the portrayal of the Florida State mascot before each home game. Osceola, a famed Seminole chief, is portrayed by a student and seen riding upon a horse, Renegade, as he gallops into the stadium. The chief plants a flaming spear in the center of the field to kick off every home football game.
Florida State also has a lesser-known but similarly unique tradition: The Sod Cemetery. Begun after an amazing road victory over Georgia in 1962, the Sod Cemetery contains pieces of turf taken from memorable road victories during the course of FSU history.
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